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§8 [40-42]

whole are is brought to a word, formulated, comes to word? To come to word-what does that mean? What the Greeks early on (and not just in their later philosophy, but as soon as they philosophized, i.e., from out of the ground of their understanding of existence [Dasein]) assigned to λέγειν, to the 'bringing to word' as its fundamental function, we can take with irrefutable clarity from the opposite concept, which the most ancient philosophers already opposed to λέγειν. What is the opposite of λέγειν? A 'not letting come to word'? How is this understood by the Greeks, by the very ones who use the word φύσις which we have elucidated? We can learn something of this from a word of Heraclitus, whom we have already mentioned: ὀ ἄναξ, οὗ τὸ μαντεῖόν ἐστι τὸ ἐν Δελφοῖς, οὔτε λέγει οὔτε κρύπτει, ἀλλὰ σημαίνει.1 "The master, whose Oracle is at Delphi, neither speaks out, nor does he conceal, but gives a sign [signifies]." Here it becomes clear that the opposite concept to λέγειν, to 'bringing to word' , is κρύπτειν, keeping concealed and in concealment. From this it necessarily follows that the fundamental function of λέγειν is to take whatever prevails from concealment. The opposite concept to λέγειν is concealing [Verbergen]; the fundamental concept and the fundamental meaning of λέγειν is 'taking out of concealment', revealing [Entbergen]. Revealing, 'taking from concealment', is that happening which occurs in the λόγος. In the λόγος the prevailing of beings becomes revealed, becomes manifest.

For these stages of thinking, which are originary in an elementary way, it is the λόγος itself which becomes manifest; the λόγος lies in prevailing itself. Yet if prevailing is torn from concealment in the λόγος, then it must, as it were, try to conceal itself. The very same Heraclitus tells us in addition (without explicitly drawing attention to this connection), as emerges from another fragment, why φύσις came to be revealed and torn from concealment explicitly in λέγειν. In the collection of fragments one sentence stands alone which to this day has never been understood or comprehended in its profundity: φύσις ... κρύπτεσθαι φιλεῖ.2 "The prevailing of things has in itself a striving to conceal itself." You can here see the innermost connection between concealment and φύσις, and at the same time the connection between φύσις and λόγος as revealing.


c) λόγος as the saying of what is unconcealed (ἀληθέα).
ἀλήθεια (truth) as something stolen, something that must be torn from concealment.


What it properly means to say that the λόγος is revealing is something we may take from another word of Heraclitus: σωφρονεῖν ἀρετὴ μεγίστη, καὶ σοφίη


1. H. Diels, op. cit., Frgm. 93.

2. Ibid., Frgm. 123.


Martin Heidegger (GA 29/30) The Fundamental Concepts of Metaphysics